Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Telling a 6 month old baby to cry it out so they can learn to fall asleep by themselves feels misguided. 

What's next, telling Cupcake to change her own diaper?  I wipe her butt after every bowel movement, and gently put her butt paste to prevent diaper rash.  Do I do this lovingly? Yes.  Do I find it gross and smelly?  Of course, I mean, have you ever changed a baby's diaper after they've had bananas or sweet potatoes?

But it would seem ludicrous to leave the little baby to cry until they learn to change the diaper themselves.  So why do we do it with sleep?

I know it's probably a bad analogy, because potty training does happen, and for many it's a frustrating and complex process.  But that's when they are older,  when they understand the concept of what they're doing.  And the current thought is to let the kid lead their potty training process, to make sure they are committed and ready.

Why isn't sleeping handled the same way?

I know, the easy answer is that wiping Cupcake's butt takes me all of 3 minutes, and thanks to disposable wipes and diaper genies we are hardly in contact with the actual poop.  While waking in the middle of the night is exhausting, debilitating and affects the whole family's sense of well being.

But to the baby it's all the same.  They're not doing it to annoy us.  This isn't a competition over who's in control.  Because we both are.  I am the mother and as such am in "control" of my child, in that she eats, has a roof over her head, and doesn't fall out the window.  My child is in control because most of her needs are immediate, and basic.  Actually, I don't think Cupcake is in actual control of anything here, she's just trying to figure out how to exist.

And unfortunately for me and Nate, sometimes those struggles happen at 3 am.

1 comment:

  1. You hit the nail on the head. Babies aren't trying to annoy us - they are being BABIES! Learning as the go....much like their parents.